For a small to medium sized business to business (B2B) brands, webinars are one of the most effective marketing tools you have to utilize. They’re even useful for some business to consumer (B2C) brands.
The prep work involved
Webinars take some prepwork to get them off the ground. However, the prepwork involved helps you make sure you’ve got a good idea of what you want to get out of it but also brings a lot of your marketing alignment together.
For a successful webinar, you need to know your target audience, you need to have existing email addresses in place with your email marketing program and/or a well-trafficked website, you need to have promotional channels in place, and you need to have expertise to share.
Webinars pull together a lot of existing digital marketing efforts into one place and it brings organization, structure and focus to some of the chaos.
Unlike other digital marketing channels like your website or your social media channels, webinars are a one-time thing. They may take more planning and direct effort leading up to the event but it’s similar to some event marketing – once the event is over, you don’t have to stress over managing it anymore.
Not much maintenance involved with a lot of potential pay-off when you consider how many assets you can pull from a webinar (blog posts, video snippets, emails…you can use the content from your webinar in a ton of different ways).
The most critical part of webinars for brands is the ROI. People have become used to giving over their email address along with basic information in exchange for something they’re interested in.
If you’re offering something that’s interesting and of value to your target audience through a webinar, you’re going to gain email addresses and potential leads at a faster (and more affordable) rate through a webinar than most any other digital marketing channel.
Preparation for other marketing opportunities
Webinars are awesome at preparing you and your marketing team for other opportunities that may come up. In particular, they’re great at preparing a team for things like offering a basic podcast channel because of the tech involved.
Think about it – for a webinar, you have to be comfortable using a mic along with lightly planning what you’ll be saying in advance (but leaving room for improvisation).
More importantly, webinars also prepare people for public speaking and marketing opportunities to talk at events. It’s like public speaking lite because you can’t directly see your audience but you can get used to talking to a crowd and fielding questions in the webinar format.